PURPOSE: A structural equation model was analysed to explore the determinants of health behaviors of university students in Korea. METHOD: Nine hundred sixty nine university students were selected by random cluster sampling from five universities located in the central area of Korea. DATA COLLECTION: The data was collected by questionnaires about demographic characteristics, stressful life events, perceived social support, perceived health status and health behaviors. RESULTS: 1. Gender showed indirect effect on health behaviors. 2. Living together with(out) family had a direct effect on health behaviors: students living with family showed more positive health behaviors. 3. Stressful life events had an indirect effect on health behaviors via perceived health status; a higher score of stressful life events was the predictor for negative health behaviors. 4. A higher score of perceived health status predicted positive health behaviors. RECOMMENDATION: Each university should be encouraged to develop a health behavior control program and health promotion program for their own university students. It would be more effective to develop health programs separately according to the demographic or social characteristics of the students. It is also necessary for the Ministry of Education to reform the School Health Act and school health policy to strengthen a health promotion program for university students. In conclusion, following studies should identify and promote the validity and reliability of perceived health status and health behaviors measurements.
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